Warning: Do not read this book if you are on a diet or if you are a recovering chocolate addict. You will be torturing yourself.
I’ll be the first to admit that I love a good, girly book every now and then. One blogger called them “brain candy,” and that is such a perfect description of Paris my Sweet.
Paris my Sweet is Amy Thomas’ memoir of working for one year on an advertising team in Paris. As an avid chocoholic and sweets addict, Amy explores the gazillion foodie spots in the City of Lights, sampling everything from Madelines to chocolate bon bons. Of course, life isn’t always a box of cherries (*grimace* that’s pretty corny), and Amy soon finds herself feeling like the only American in Paris. As a single 36-year-old, she misses her socially active life in New York City, filled with oodles of friends, English-speaking people, and Sunday chats over sweets with her best friend, AJ. Amy soon finds herself in a funk as she struggles between trying to find acceptance and friendship in Paris and longing for her comfortable life in the Big Apple. She loves Paris, but being lonely is enough to drive any girl back across the Atlantic. She drowns her sorrows, if only momentarily, by cycling around the city and trying different bakeries, restaurants, and sweet shops. But, in the end, she comes to a decision she knows is right. To live in Paris or New York, that is the question. You can find the answer in Paris my Sweet.
This book sucked me in from the first few pages. I absolutely loved Amy Thomas’ way of describing food. You can practically smell, see, and taste those sweets as you read through the vivid passages recalling Amy’s first memories of biting into a melty, New York chocolate chip cookie or slurping a pot of thick, Parisian hot chocolate. What’s even better is that she lists the places you, the reader, can find her favorite goodies if you’re in New York or Paris. This would be such a fun pre-travel read if you’re going to be exploring either of these two cities in the near (or not so near) future. Even if traveling isn’t in your future, you’ll want to hop on a plane and hit these bakeries after you’ve read the kind of things they offer.
Although I loved the sweet side of this book, I was really disappointed in some of the content. Language is a continuous issue in this book, especially with four or five appearances of the f-bomb, which left me saying “Really? Why did you have to put that in there?” The book would be just fine, and obviously a lot better, without the multiple appearances of bad language. Also, some of the activities discussed in this book are less than appropriate for young audiences. Marital relationships and the accompanying man and wife interaction is not viewed in a Christian manner. Casual sex is presented as totally fine, and even expected. Bar hopping and other drunken escapades are also mentioned in this book. These issues really tanked my view on this book. This could have easily become one of my favorite chick-lit reads if not for all the added “extras.”
So, do I or do I not recommend this book? I’m actually not going to do either. I’ll let you decide whether or not to read Paris my Sweet based on the content review I’ve given. However, I will recommend the lists of bakeries and other eateries Thomas lists at the end of each chapter and at the end of the book. These are issue free and great for potential tourists, or even inspiring a trip to explore your local food hotspots.